Skip to main content

Palace Half Marathon - King Henry's Race

With the Madrid marathon a short five weeks away, my training is getting pretty intense. So far I've had one 20 mile run and the next two weeks are the toughest in the program. This past week was an "easy" week, which meant lighter mileage at a slower pace. I really enjoy these recovery weeks every four weeks and this past weekend planned in a half marathon with Beth at Hampton Court Palace.

We chose those race for its proximity to our house as well as being a very familiar route. It starts at the main entrance to Hampton Court (home of King Henry VIII) and ends in the Palace gardens. I've run most of this route many times before.


The races started in waves due to the tight towpath along the river. I started in wave 1, Beth was in wave 7. This was her first half in a few years, certainly her first since we moved to London.

I like to have a latte pick-me-up before I start my runs, so as we were a bit early, we headed to the cafe. We also knew this would have the least crowded toilets!


As race time approached we parted ways. Beth to drop our bag off at the event village while I headed to the starting line. And what a cool start it was! About 3500 runners packed in from of the King's home. The King himself was even at the start line seeing us off (and hopefully not beheading anyone).


The race started and my goals were simple. Take it easy, enjoy the race, find a comfortable pace in which I wouldn't breathe too heavy, and work on negative splits (run the 2nd half faster than the 1st half). I've been working hard to "feel" my marathon pace, which means not looking at my watch very often. Halfway into the race I took a peek at my watch and realised I was about 30 seconds faster than marathon pace. If I slowed down, that would mean not hitting my negative splits, which was more of a priority Sunday. So on I went, feeling comfortable and starting to gradually pick up the pace.

The course was lovely! The riverside views make for a great distraction. Then we turned into Home Park for the last two miles and BAM the wind hit us right in the face. It was like running straight into a wall of wind. This was a fun challenge to finish out the race. Many runners were fading by this point, yet I still felt pretty fresh. It's odd how 13.1 miles doesn't seem like a very long run anymore.

I finished in 1:36:14 for my second best half marathon time ever. I certainly wasn't expecting that. What I loved even more was nailing the negative splits!


I crossed the finish line, grabbed a few extra drinks and suddenly, there he is...King Henry VIII. I had to get a post-race photo with him.


He was super gracious and made sure that I had enjoyed myself. I took the opportunity before Beth finished to use the toilet, cool down, change my shirt, put on my jacket, use the toilet, do some stretching, eat a pizza and go find Beth along the finish.


I'm super proud of her! She's been working so hard for months now on her dieting and workouts, then she threw training for a half marathon into the mix. That ain't easy!

Then I see her, running with about 1/2 mile to go. I ran to the fence to cheer her on, then raced ahead to see her as she approached the finish.


And that was that! Another half marathon in the books. One last picture with King Henry and we headed home to relax our sore muscles the rest of the day.

A post shared by Beth Kriebel (@kriebelbeth) on

Comments

  1. How exciting for both of you but specially Beth. A big congratulations it is hard to add finding time to run w a full mom schedule. What a great picture too. You both look fantastic.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Balmoral: The Queen's Summer Home

Balmoral, in Royal Deeside, Aberdeenshire, is the Scottish home to the Royal family; I prefer calling it Liz's summer home because, well, she's super adorable and she has a serious crib for her summer home. We paid a visit here on our drive from Fort William to Ballater, our stay for the next three nights. The castle is only open from April to July, so we got lucky to get here on the last day it was open. Was Queen Elizabeth there??

As for Royal homes, I've been to Tower of London, Kensington Palace, and Hampton Court Palace. If I had to rank Balmoral, I'd put it behind Hampton Court Palace. There are quite a few similarities between the two, mostly due to the extensive gardens, which doesn't exist in near the scale at Tower of London nor Kensington Palace.

We had a couple of hours to spend here, so being the tourists we are, we went with the audio tour, always a favorite of mine so that I can listen and look without needing to read to much. I find I enjoy this way…

Fort William Marathon: The Best Kept Secret in Racing

Earlier this year I had been training hard for the Limassol Marathon, through ice and sleet and snow, only to have what I considered a disappointing race. I struggled to recover mentally, but I knew I had another race on the horizon...the Fort William Marathon. This event was my first marathon back in July 2015, shortly after the family made the move to London. The main difference this time, though, was that we're three kids lighter with Michael and the twins all back in the US for some time with their friends.

I hadn't thought much about running this race again until Chris, the race organizer, reached out to me to offer me a complimentary spot. This was incredibly generous and given how much I liked the race the first time, there was no way I was going to refuse. Granted, Chris made this offer well before the race in Cyprus.

The posts-Limassol blues stuck around for much longer than I'd expected. I was really down on myself, questioning why I put in the effort and the tr…

You call this a taper?

My 6th marathon is coming up and all of the training plans I've followed previously have included a pretty drastic decline in mileage the last two weeks. For this marathon, I decided to follow the Hanson's Marathon Method after reading their book.

The plan includes 6 runs per week, whereas I was running 4 days per week previously. For some context, the highest mileage week on Hanson's is 57.5 miles and my first "taper" week was still at 49.5 miles. I've been feeling great following their plan so I'll trust they know what they're doing.
Monday - 7mi easy I've been loving the easy runs. I actually get to enjoy running rather than slogging through every workout being tough. I love running through Hyde Park, so my route went from Hammersmith Station through Hyde Park then to work. I wrote a more extensive post about this particular run here.

Tuesday - 6x1mi @ marathon pace - 10 sec + 1.5mi warm up/cool down I tested out some super light race shoes Tu…